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When I founded NonDoc on Aug. 31 of last year with a team of creatives and journalists, my hope was I could some some day transition it to my collaborators as a site where talented and intelligent writers could have a platform for respectful dialogue with communities near and far. That day has come, both because of a meaningful professional opportunity for me (more on that below) and due to the successful engagement from NonDoc readers, sponsors and advertisers.

NonDoc’s editors, William W. Savage III and Josh McBee, now own the site, and since day one of our launch, they have been the engine and soul behind the quality, daily content sourced from dozens of writers. The idea of NonDoc was never to be duplicative of any other news or commentary entity but rather to fill a niche that wasn’t being offered to the public. You, the reader, have been engaged and loyal, and without your commitment to local, independent journalism, new media sites like this one struggle to stay afloat. News production and consumption has changed dramatically over the past 15 years, and NonDoc will continue to find ways to stay innovative and representative of what curious and open-minded readers want and deserve.

Although I am no longer involved with the company, I urge you to find ways to support NonDoc moving forward. NonDoc is always looking for sponsors (large and small), individual voluntary subscribers and advertisers to align with the work of contributors whose journalism fills the site on a daily basis. And if you are inspired to write a commentary or a letter to the editor, please contact the editors with your work. More diverse voices offering different takes on important issues of the day is a big part of the NonDoc mission. I hope to continue to write a piece here and there moving forward.

Teen Recovery in our community

I was excited to join the board of Teen Recovery Solutions (TRS) late last year after learning of its successful track record helping teens in recovery and their families. TRS operates Mission Academy in Oklahoma City, one of 24 accredited recovery high schools in the nation.

Recovery high schools like Mission Academy offer a safe environment where recovering teens are around peers who are similarly committed to staying clean and sober. The highly trained educators, staff and counselors wrap all the necessary resources and support around the students to ensure their success in getting a diploma, maintaining sobriety and having fun doing it. The teens’ families and support systems take part in peer-group therapy and are an integral part of the program as well. Mission Academy is accredited with the Oklahoma State Department of Education, OKA+ Schools and the Association of Recovery Schools. It has maintained a 93 percent graduation rate over the past five years.

Teen Recovery SolutionsTRS also operates alternate peer-group sessions for teens and their parents. These as well are an innovative service in the recovery community for families whose teens do not attend a recovery high school but are struggling with substance abuse. The demand for these sessions in the greater Oklahoma City area has grown, and TRS recently expanded its access for these by partnering with a local church facility.

Longtime TRS executive director Janet Oden has been set to retire this year, and the opportunity to step in as her successor came my way last month. I struggled with addiction as a teen in the late 1980s and early 1990s. I began my recovery in 1993, and it has given me immeasurable gifts and joys with family, friendships, parenting and my career. The chance to wake up each day and work with a dynamic team of educators and clinical staff in support of these teens’ success and health was too meaningful an opportunity for me to pass up. My first day as executive director will be Monday, and I am quite grateful for the opportunity to do this work.

The dedication and time needed for this new job, however, has made continuing on as the publisher of a daily news site impossible. But this transition has offered a win-win opportunity for me and the work I passionately want to pursue, as well as for William and Josh and their tremendous work building a news site from scratch that can continue to increase its output and impact in a sustainable way.

I ask that you take a moment and watch the video above about TRS, and if you want to stay informed of the work we do and our efforts to expand our services in Oklahoma, then please sign up for the TRS email newsletter or follow TRS on Facebook.